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Accelerate Private and Public Clouds

The pace of business is accelerating.  As consumers, the internet has changed our expectations for how to order products, services or information as well as how fast it is delivered.  Think about it.   We access a web page, order what we want and complete the transaction.  In some cases, our orders are delivered within hours.

The process is not so simple in the business world.

You have a new project and you want to get started right away.  After weeks of meetings, IT has identified that they have the resources but it will take six to eight weeks for them to make them available.  How would you respond?

This is not an imaginary scenario.  As the world becomes digitized, businesses need to respond with speed and agility to keep pace.  Your employees expect the same level of service delivery and on-line shopping experience that they have as consumers.   These changes are creating the need to transform traditional models to new, cloud-based models that produce the speed, agility and on-line consumer experience your employees anticipate.

Private cloud is being deployed as a means to meet these new service and delivery expectations.  Private cloud delivers speed not just to your data center but across all layers of your organization.  It allows your business to be more productive, efficient and profitable.  The foundation to private cloud is infrastructure and infrastructure does matter.

The combination of Cisco ONE Enterprise Cloud Suite and VCE Vblock™ Systems deliver a pre-validated private cloud solution with all the essential automation tools and an infrastructure stack designed to accelerate the deployment of a hybrid-ready private cloud.  Watch this video to learn more.

Cisco ONE Enterprise Cloud Suite delivers out-of-box infrastructure automation that spans compute, network, storage and virtualization.  The self-service portal allows employees to order on demand data center, applications or business services that include your best practices and compliance policies. The built-in stack designer allows architects to combine application profiles and infrastructure templates to create applications as a service.  Built-in hybrid capability delivers the same levels of security, control and management to public providers that is available in your private cloud.

Vblock™ Systems from VCE represent the next evolution of IT – one that unleashes simplicity by delivering efficiency and business agility of private cloud environments.  Integration of best-in-class compute, network, and storage technologies from Cisco, EMC, and VMware deliver resources that can be provisioned and managed quickly to meet the changing demands of today’s business.   Pre-integrated, tested and validated, the combination of VCE Vblock™ Systems and Cisco ONE Enterprise Cloud Suite simplify and accelerate hybrid ready private clouds.

As the pace of business accelerates, you need to be able to respond quickly to changing business needs and business opportunities.  Cisco ONE Enterprise Cloud Suite and VCE Vblock™ Systems deliver a pre-validated hybrid ready private cloud that lets IT better align with business needs as well as deliver new products to your customers faster.

To learn more about Cisco ONE Enterprise Cloud Suite, go to:  www.cisco.com/go/cloudsuite.

To learn more about VCE Vblock™ Systems, go to:  www.vce.com

To learn more about Cisco’s other management solutions go to:   www.cisco.com/go/um

 

 

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Overcoming Cloud Jargon

These are three conversations that I had recently with a partner, a customer, and a Cisco executive (not necessarily in this order):

“Cloud refers to only private and hybrid cloud, right?”

“I thought infrastructure-as-a-service is public cloud, not software-as-a-service.”

“We know how much public cloud we are using because we know what infrastructure-as-a-services we are using. What I need to know is what SaaS applications we are using.”

This stood out to me in a major way. While the term “cloud” has been around for a while, there is still confusion as to what it actually means.

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Three Hybrid Cloud Applications That Make it Worth the Fuss…

So you thought that cloud was the fad of the day. But it stuck. Now you hear all the fuss about hybrid cloud. Even the die-hard cloud fanatics who believed that the only cloud had to be in the public cloud, have conceded that folks need hybrid cloud – a seamless application environment across on-premise and off-premise infrastructure that can provide best of both worlds – speed, scale and economics of public cloud with control, security and data sovereignty of private cloud. Hybrid cloud allows this perfect balance and you don’t have to worry about walking on a fine rope or tripping over IT control or compliance while providing agile IT services.

abstract image of acrobat elaphant

Sounds great! But what exactly can you do with hybrid cloud? A couple of use cases come to mind:

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My take on the integrated infrastructure buzz

I recently created a playlist of my favorite 80’s, 90’s and current songs. Listening to the playlist in shuffle mode, I noticed the stark contrast and evolution of the recording quality from the old classics to the current stuff.

Thank you Pink Floyd and Apple

I have to admit that the quality does get progressively better overtime, but in some cases tunes just sounded over-engineered, especially on the digitally recorded tracks. As good as they may sound, they often lack the warmth of reel-to-reel tape deck recordings. I am sure someone is busy developing an app to fix that.

The Tres Virgo Recording Studio – 1980’s style with owner Robin Yeager

The Tres Virgo Recording Studio – 1980’s style with owner Robin Yeager

It actually makes me wonder how some artists are able to pull some of those over-engineered studio songs off on a live stage, and some do a great job. But these days, concerts are as much about the show, not just the music – thank you Pink Flyod for setting a trend.

Pink Flyod Live – Earls Court, London 1994

Awesomeness: Pink Flyod Live – Earls Court, London 1994

But I digress: what digital allows you to do is fix stuff in the mix with a simple mouse click, versus having to re-record part of, or all of the tracks. That is time and money saving stuff. It is streamlined sound engineering workflows at it’s best.

And it has opened up a whole world of possibilities for recording artists, including making mediocre ones sound pretty amazing. In fact, anyone with Garage Band installed on a MAC (and some talent) can sound pretty good these days. Thank you Apple.

Is your data center stuck in the tape-deck age?

Similar evolution has occurred in data centers around the globe. An IT environment of disparate servers, storage, and networking systems all managed in silos is a thing of the past. Or is it?

The unfortunate reality for many organizations is that their data centers are stuck in the tape deck age and associated laborious workflows. The result is that much of today’s IT budget is still being consumed by keeping the data centers humming along. That comes at the expense of real innovation.

It’s no surprise that in today’s connected-everything world, businesses and organizations off all sizes rely heavily on IT. And in that world, you need an infrastructure that is up to the task: an environment that is agile, secure and simple to manage with few resources.

Once you have that in place, your talented IT folks can turn their attention to focusing on real innovation that can lead to tangible business outcomes, rather than just keeping the lights on – just as talented musicians should focus on the music.

So what a novel idea to have an environment that combines compute, storage and networking into a pre-validated, fully integrated design that can be centrally managed? Enter the idea of integrated infrastructure. By no means is this a new concept. After all, many vendors now claim they deliver integrated infrastructure. Or can they?

I can’t speak for other vendors, but can say that Cisco has teamed up with the best in the industry to deliver pre-validated (so you know it will work together), integrated systems.

And they work just as advertised. I recently discovered this when I picked up my personal hardcopy of Unleashing IT.

I was delighted when my hardcopy of Unleashing IT arrived in the mail

I was delighted when my hardcopy of Unleashing IT arrived in the mail

This edition dedicated to discussing the various Integrated Infrastructure flavors available today from Cisco and it’s eco-system of partners. It profiles businesses and organizations much like yours that are reaping the business benefits.

I encourage you to take a moment to subscribe, download the pdf or get your personal hardcopy shipped to you, and let me know what you think.

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Easy to Build, Easy to Manage: Cisco OpenStack Private Cloud

What if a private cloud could give your developers the easy, fast, and predictable experience that public cloud delivers, but inside your own data center, behind your own firewalls?  It’s what more and more companies are looking to provide.

Different clouds for different crowds

Innovative organizations are increasingly deploying two modes of IT — traditional IT and agile IT. Traditional IT is what we’ve all know. The focus is on “doing IT right,” with approval-based governance, and price-for-performance. Agile IT is focused on “doing IT fast,” supporting prototyping and iterative development, rapid delivery, continuous, and value to the business.  Gartner calls this model “bimodal IT” and estimates that 45% of CIO’s already deploy a second, agile mode of IT.

Cisco has a long history of providing infrastructure for traditional enterprise private cloud environments. In fact, we lead the industry with Cisco UCS Integrated Infrastructure solutions such as vBlock Systems, Flexpod, and VersaStack. With the acquisition of Metacloud in September 2014, we now offer an agile IT environment for developers.

Enter Metacloud

The Metacloud product, now available worldwide as Cisco OpenStack Private Cloud, delivers the engineering and ongoing operations to provide a public cloud experience within the firewalls in an organization. The advanced operations subscription to Cisco OpenStack Private Cloud takes the burden of engineering and operations of the private cloud environment away from your teams, so they can focus on automating the testing, deployment, and scale of your applications.

Metacloud solved the challenges of running a sophisticated OpenStack® private cloud that delivers an easy, fast, predictable “public cloud-like” experience to developers. But under our original model customers are still left with the challenge of building an OpenStack private cloud—cobbling together the data center components of your private cloud, using  traditional IT models for getting those set up and configured.

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